Bonn, Germany [RenewableEnergyAccess.com] SolarWorld AG officially opened its largest expansion project to date, a new solar photovoltaic (PV) wafer production facility, at the current production location in Freiberg, Germany.The silicon wafer production capacities in Freiberg will increase to 500 megawatts (MW) by the end of 2009, which is the equivalent of doubling current capacity. “With this millennium expansion we are presenting one of the most efficient wafer factories of our time. In it we will be leading the way of the international industry trend towards more raw material and performance efficient wafers,” said Professor Dr. Peter Woditsch, CEO of the SolarWorld subsidiary Deutsche Solar AG. The expansion project could be completed in less than 18 months. The group has invested about Euro 60 million [US$81 million]; another Euro 100 million [US$135 million] will follow until 2009. In the new factory, a highly advanced set of machines, some of them developed by the company, will turn crystallized silicon into high quality columns and wafers. “With the persistent expansion of our capacities we are consistently strengthening Germany as an industrial location. Our headcount in Germany will continue to increase considerably,” explained Frank H. Asbeck, Chairman and CEO of SolarWorld AG.